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Modern Languages & Literatures
Nicole Brossard: Essays on Her Works
Beginning with the title reference to Ludwig Wittgenstein's Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, Nicole Brossard incorporates familiar textual voices into Picture Theory, her densely polyphonic novel from 1982, and thickens it with cross references, casting shadows within it. The novel's intertexts are lit by Brossard's vision of the hologram as a model for writing as articulated in her essay "The Aerial Letter" from 1980, rather than by Cartesian patriarchal reason. The intellectual space of the novel drifts, according to Picture Theory's emblematic word (and name) derive (Derive), or turns around the reader like a translucent textual scarf, leaving the impression of having traversed a geographic space in which overlapping realities coexist. With Picture Theory, Brossard moves into the third dimension of writing and seals her poetic francophone feminist vision.
Conley, Katharine, Moving into the Third Dimension: Nicole Brossard’s Picture Theory (2005). Nicole Brossard: Essays on Her Works.